What are retinal vein occlusion causes?

The highest risk factors for retinal vein occlusion causes lie with abnormalities of blood pressure, called hypertension, or abnormalities of raised cholesterol. These are important risk factors to test for and modify.

Under certain circumstances, there are other conditions that are associated with retinal vein occlusion. For example, a woman who has an increased number of miscarriages may have abnormalities of clotting. That becomes evident for the vein occlusion later in life.

Conditions such as thyroid diseases can increase the risk of a vein occlusion as well. Vein occlusions are also more common in patients with glaucoma.

Another factor for vein occlusion is an association with the disease called myeloma, which is a blood cancer. Now in the past, we used to test for this routinely as an ophthalmologist with what we call electrophoresis test. That is no longer necessary as part of a routine test unless there are specific indications. For example, severe back pain or other features of myeloma disease being present.

If someone were to modify their risks, the main things to take care of are blood pressure and cholesterol, and we make sure that their eye pressure is within a normal range.